Monday, July 17, 2017

Shqip Shumë (update #50)

Përshëndetje tout le monde!!!

Above are the only 3 words that I know in Albanian. They mean "Albanian" "a lot" and "hello" respectively hahah. Why do I know 3 words in Albanian? Because our sweet Albanian family we found last week came to church with is this week! It was one of my favorite experiences of my whole mission. We left our apartment 2 hours before church, went to their house and led them on buses, trams and through the winding streets of Talence to arrive at church just on time...or maybe 5 minutes late...oops.
So we came parading into the chapel 5 minutes late with 3 confused little Albanian children and their slightly more confused parents in tow... and from then on it was just an adventure. They are so faithful and trying so hard to learn, but they speak very limited French and no one in our chapel spoke a lick of Albanian. But I have never seen members try so hard to help people feel welcome and they said they would come back next week. I'm just grateful for the tool of technology that allows us to at least pull up scriptures and talks in Albanian and the spirit that helped us to communicate a tiny bit.

This last week we were able to have a rendezvous with them and someone in the other Bordeaux ward that speaks a tiny bit of Albanian which was slightly improved (way better than us alone because we have 0 in Albanian lol), but long term we are going to need to find another solution. We're looking into skyping missionaries in an Albanian speaking mission, but we need all the prayers we can get that we will find a way to teach  and serve this petite famille.

In other news this week was also MLC which was AMAZING as always.  

President Brown made the huge announcement that our mission is becoming an online proselyting mission in the next coming months. 

In normal words that just means we will be using Facebook to do missionary work. I have no idea what the details are at this point, all I know is that in the next month we'll be doing a lot of training and preparing so that in the future we can use Facebook to communicate with and find new amis/ members. I never wanted to use Facebook as a missionary because it's just really nice to kind of be in a separate world, but after hearing President Brown's presentation on it, I'm so excited for the opportunity this will be to share the light and joy of Christ with more people than ever. It's like the scripture in Alma that says:

24 For behold, angels are declaring it unto many at this time in our land; and this is for the purpose of preparing the hearts of the children of men to receive his word at the time of his coming in his glory.

God has given us so many new ways to share light with people who are living in the shadows and social media is just one of them. And ever since I've been in France, but especially since the consecration of the temple it is clear that "God is preparing the hearts of His children" right here, right now to rejoice with Him.

Saturday was my 20th birthday!! 
It was super fun. We had 2 rendezvous which both fell through so we ended up with an open day. As I was sitting in bed doing language study (yes sometimes I do language study in bed...oops), I had a weird thought that we needed to go visit Soeur Baquedano and that we needed to bring pants. We had already visited her last week so it was a little weird to pass by again so soon, but Soeur Rutter had been feeling like we needed to visit them too so we decided to go for it. We showed up at their house and she immediately invited us in. When we told her we brought pants she said that she had so much to do getting ready for her son to come home from his mission
to Sweden this week and that we came at the perfect time. We helped clean out her fridge and kitchen and then ate cake with her husband (ami de l'église) and daughter and it ended up being such a cool
afternoon. Grateful for the most random promptings hahah.

Then in the soir the Elders and Fiona made a little party and it was the best! It hasn't really sunk in that I've been a human being for more than 2 decades but it was really cool to be in France in the best ward ever for my birthday. La vie est belle et Bordeaux est la meilleure!!

The one lowlight of this week is that we haven't heard anything from Danielle. We've been sending her scripture texts every day and she usually replies but this week she just stopped responding and didn't respond to me inviting her to do something for my birthday or anything. It's honestly really hard to see such huge miracles, to find someone so prepared, to love them so much and then not to hear anything or have any closure. But I guess all we can do is keep hope and trust in the God that knows her perfectly. Doubt not fear not.

Thank you so much for all of your birthday wishes!!! They mean the world to me! Have the best week ever, je vous aime!

Soeur Cami Goold

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